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Hi, this is Keith Davidson with Albertson & Davidson. In this video, I want to discuss when you can sue for trust mismanagement.
If you believe that your trustee is mismanaging the trust assets, perhaps they’re not investing properly, perhaps they’re actually taking money or using money for their own benefit, you really need to take action as soon as possible to make sure that you can stop any harm from happening to the trust, or any further harm from happening to the trust. But you do need to have at least some evidence or some facts to support your claim that there is trustee mismanagement. So you usually start either by filing a Petition in the Probate Court and asking that the court hold the trustee accountable for whatever harm has occurred. Or, if you’re not fully advised of all the harm, then you’re going to want to demand an accounting from the trustee. Ask the trustee to account for their actions. If the trustee refuses, then you go to court and you ask the court to order the trustee to account for his or her actions.
Once you have the accounting, then you can see what has occurred in the trust administration. You can issue subpoenas or do discovery, and you can start gathering the facts and the evidence you need to see what the mismanagement was and what actions need to be taken to right that harm.
So if you’re a beneficiary and you suspect trust mismanagement, you really need to take action as quickly as possible to number one, be advised of what is happening. What is the financial information that you need to know to see what’s going wrong? And, number two, hold the trustee accountable for the harms and losses that they’ve caused to the trust estate.